Business leaders in the UAE are embracing technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), big data, cloud and enhanced analytics in a push to increase efficiencies and improve customer experience.\nMany cite this as the reason behind the region\u2019s recent economic growth, but executives believe that while new tech brings multiple benefits to employees, it can also bring added stress.\nAccording to a recent report by Robert Half UAE, over half (55 percent) of business leaders questioned believe that their company\u2019s increasing reliance on new technology is very positive for staff. They noted that introducing new technologies helps employees expand their skill sets and free up time to focus on more strategic work.\nImprove employee productivity\nSurvey results showed that business leaders have seen progress in the freeing up of employee time to focus on more strategic work by 40 percent and improving collaboration between departments and colleagues by 42 percent thanks to the implementation of technologies such as automation, AI and advanced analytics. These can take time-consuming manual tasks from employees\u2019 workloads, freeing them from mundane daily jobs in order to work on more high value tasks.\nTechnology\u2019s ability to improve flexible working options is also a big employee benefit, \u201cwith more opportunity to work remotely and communicate effectively,\u201d says Gareth El Mettouri, Associate Director at Robert Half UAE. \u201cResearch from our Salary Guide sees 86 percent of UAE organisations modernising their work environments to attract more talent,\u201d he adds.\nProblems with technological reliance\nTechnological reliance isn\u2019t entirely without issues, however. It can put a huge strain on existing employees. Robert Half UAE\u2019s research noted that a lack of the right training is the biggest issue, stifling employees\u2019 ability to adapt to changes that come with the introduction of a new technology into the business. This can also lead to staff acquiring a resistance to change.\nProactive business leaders are ensuring these problems don\u2019t occur within their company through several means. Firstly they\u2019re making sure that employees receive the training they need in order to make the most from these technologies. Robert Half UAE\u2019s latest salary guide shows promising results from UAE business leaders, with 81 percent offering training to support \u201cdigital change\u201d.\nThe importance of training\nEl Mettouri notes that business leaders should be aware of what technical learning and training is available to their employees at all levels, with consideration taken on the adaption process and the long-term effects on their workforce when implementing new technologies.\n\u201cTechnological understanding is the top skill leading digital change according to 63 percent of UAE business leaders surveyed, so it\u2019s important to make sure that their senior leadership is provided with the right training. They can then advance their knowledge to become digital leaders and plan ahead for the challenges that whole departments may face when implementing new technologies,\u201d he notes.\nRecruit the right skills\nSecondly, business leaders are hiring staff with the necessary skills to oversee new technological implementations and ensure employees are fully supported and prepared for any changes to come.\n\u201cTo ensure they have the proper training 42 percent of employers are looking to upskill current employees by hiring new talent with the (necessary) technical know-how so employers can retain and hire new talent,\u201d El Mettouri points out.\n\u201cWith the digital skills shortage set to increase there is more opportunity to hire technology professionals in order to retain current talent and upskill them,\u201d he continues. \u201cRoles such as \u2018digital transformation consultant\u2019 or \u2018AI developer\u2019 are on the rise due to progression with AI and automation technology and the need for businesses to keep up with demand in the market.\u201d\nGet prepared\nBusiness\u2019 growing reliance on technology is making leaders reassess their current staffing and training models. But those that are prepared for the growing role of technology within their company are placing themselves in a better position to adapt and move forward with their goals.\nBy creating a workplace culture that focuses on continued development and training within the technology space, you\u2019ll create an appealing work environment for both current employees and those you\u2019re looking to recruit. This in turn will lead to fulfilled and productive staff that will help push your business to even further success.